The abbot of St. Bennet of Holm had at the survey one socman in
this town, with 30 acres of land, and 4 borderers, with 2 acres of meadow, valued at 5s. 4d. (fn. 1) and his manor of Stalham, extended into this
town, and was a principal part of it.
William Stalham held here the 5th part of a fee, and in Stalman,
of the old feofment, of the abbot and church of Holme in the reign of
Henry I.; (fn. 2) and it appears from the register of that abbey, that Bartholomew de Calthorp held lands here and in Stalham, part of a fee,
and William de Stalham, lands here, in Stalham, and Irstede, by the
tenth part of a fee; the abbot continued the said lands to William,
who gave the abbot 60 marks of silver, and 2 villains, dated at St.
Bennet's Ao. 11 Edward I. (fn. 3)
In the 11th of Edward II. Sir Walter de Calthorp released to the
abbot and his successours, Kybald Hall, in Beston, formerly Sir William, his father's—witnesses, Sir Jeff. Wyth, Sir Roger Genney.
The principal manor in the town was that which belonged to William de Stalham, who had the patronage of the church in the reign
of Edward I. it was brought by Isabel, a daughter and coheir, to Sir
Jeff. Wyth, and went with the lordship, as appears from the presentations; and is held by lease of the Bishop of Norwich.
Besides Stalham's manor, John de Leems and his parceners held
here, and in Barton, the 10th part of a fee of the abbot, in the 3d of
Henry IV. and Julian Norwich, widow, conveyed it in the 30th of
Henry VIII. to William Hare, Gent. Thomas Hare, his son, dying
s. p. it came to his sister Audrey, and by her marriage to Thomas Hobart, of Plumstede.
Sir Henry Hobart presented, as lord of Stalham, in 1609, and 1631,
and was lord of Leem's manor.
After this it came to the Prestons; Jacob Preston, Esq. presenting
as lord in 1658, who was descended from William Preston of Preston,
in Suffolk, Gent. and Rose his wife, daughter of — Whipple of
Dickleburgh in Norfolk, had Jacob, his fourth son, of Old Buckenham
in Norfolk, Gent. who died in 1630, and left by Thomasine his wife,
daughter of — Lovell of Shropham in Norfolk, Jacob Preston of
Beeston aforesaid, who married Frances, daughter and heiress of Sir
Isaac Appleton, Knt. of Walding field in Suffolk, and was father of
Sir Isaac Preston, who by Elizabeth, his wife, daughter of Charles
Cook, Esq. of Norwich, left at his death, December 9, 1708, Jacob
Preston, Esq. his son and heir, lord of this manor; Sir Isaac was
knighted at White-hall, by King William, in 1695.
In 1755, Isaac Preston, Esq. presented as lord and patron.
The tenths were 1l 15s.—Deducted 20s.
The Church is a rectory dedicated to St. Laurence, valued at 5
marks in the reign of Edward I. when William de Stalham was lord
and patron; the rector had a manse, and 20 acres, the abbot of St.
Bennet had a portion of 3s. per ann. Peter-pence 7d. the present valor is 6l. and is discharged.
Jeffrey, occurs rector in 1299.
1328, William Wyth, instituted, presented by Sir Jeff. Wyth.
1338, Robert Attefaldgate, by the Bishop, a lapse.
1342, John de Lexham, by Sir Oliver Wythe.
1375, Henry Stoket. Ditto.
1375, Henry Stoket, by Amicia, relict of Sir Jeff. Wyth.
1376, John de Lexham. Ditto.
1380, Jeff. Glegg, by the Bishop, a lapse.
1385, Robert de Kilverston, by John Wythe.
1388, Richard Byshop, by John Blondelle and Amicia his wife,
relict of Sir Jeff. Wythe.
1403, John Stone, by Sir William Calthorpe.
1404, Henry Poyt. Ditto.
1413, Mr. John Walden, by John Calthorp, Esq.
1424, Richard Bowell, by Henry Inglose.
1428, Reginald Peper, by Sir Henry Inglose and Amy his wife.
Mr. Robert Peppy, rector.
1439, Henry Droughelyn, by Sir Henry Inglose and Ann his wife,
in right of the manor of Smalburgh.
1460, Mr. Robert Bennet, LL.B. by William Calthorp, Esq.
1463, Nicholas Frenge. Ditto.
1466, Reginald Steyn. Ditto.
1481, Robert Calhowe, by Sir William Calthorpe.
1492, John Down. Ditto.
1493, Ad. Swayn. Ditto.
1514, Thomas Alman.
1550, Hamon Chaunte, by Sir Henry Parker, and Elizabeth his
1557, George Vicars, by Sir William Woodhouse and Elizabeth his
1562, John Kydley. Ditto.
John Fenton, rector.
1579, Edmund Drury, by Sir Phil. Parker.
1586, Richard Jackson, by the Queen.
1608, Anth. Drury, by the Bishop, and the King.
1609, George Tayler, by Sir Henry Hobart.
Samuel Gold, rector.
1631, Edmund Claxton. Ditto.
1658, Richard Jackson, by Jacob Preston, Esq.
1670, Charles Preston, by Jacob Preston, Esq.
1713, Thomas Bampfield, rector, by James Preston, Esq.
1724, John Huntington. Ditto.
Thomas Fasset, rector, in 1755, on Huntington's death, by
Isaac Preston, Esq.
The Church is a single pile, with a chancel, covered with reed,
and has a round tower, with one bell; against the north wall of the
chancel is a mural monument of white marble,
M. S. Isaacj Preston, Equitis aurati, virj dignissimi tam regiæ majestatis quam patriæ, libertatis, jurisq; humani generis vindicis eximij;
suis et omnib; benevolentissimi duab; uxorib; morum probitate conspicuis,
felicissimi. Prima Elizabetha filia et hæretrix Carolj Georgij Cock,
Armig, et Annæ uxoris ejus, hæretricis Ricardj Bond, Gen. lœta fuit
sobolis mater, altera Elizabetha relicta Gulielmi Woorts Generosi, filia
fuit Riches Brown, Armig. novercas inter optimas prima. Hoc monumentum Jacob Preston, filius et hæres gratus, mærensq; posuit Ao, æræ
Christianæ, MDCCVIII. Gloria Deo, pax hominib;
On a monument, ermin, on a chief sable, three crescents, argent,
Preston, with Cock, quarterly, gules and argent, in an escutcheon of
pretence; also Preston impaling Cock, and Preston impaling Brown,
—, two barrulets between three spears heads.
Near this lie 3 marble grave-stones; one
In memory of Sir Isaac, who died December 8, 1708, aged 68 and
8 months; another—In memory of Eliz. his first wife, who died Nov.
3, 1687, ætat. 37.—The 3d—For Dame Eliz. his 2d wife, widow of
William Woorts of Trunch, and daughter of Riches Brown of Fulmodeston, Esq. in Norfolk. who died Aug. 24, 1698.
Under the north wall is an altar tomb,
D. S. Hic requiescit Francisca nuper charissima uxor Jac. Preston,
filia et hæres Isaacj Appleton, equitis auratj, e qua suscepit filios, Isaac,
Johan. Tho. Jacob. Franc. et Calorum, obt. filia piissima, uxor fidelissinea, parens indulgentissima, soror amantissima, mater familiis prudentissima, pauperib; opulentissima, et omnib; benevolentissima, 20 die
Martij, anno salutis M.DC. LXXIII, ætat. LXIII; and the arms of
Preston, impaling Appleton, argent a fess, sable, between three apples
In dormitorie infra fact. jacet etiam Jacob Preston, Armiger, maritus Franciscæ, qui obt. 30, Sept. Ao. 1683, ætat. 70.
Hic jacet Thomasina, nup. uxor Jacob Preston de vet. Buckenham
in comit. Norf. Gen. quæ obt. 25 Nov. 1658, Ao, ætat. 82.
In the church were the arms of Boyland, azure, a saltire engrailed
or: also azure, three bucks heads cabos'd, gules; and argent, a fess
between three cornish crows, proper.
In the church was the guild of St. Laurence.
Sir Jeff. Wythe, Knt. was buried in the chancel in 1373.